Understanding the music festival fan

With the Download music festival taking place this week, it represents a harbinger of a summer full of music festivals of varying scope and size. Of course the notable absentee is Glastonbury, which is having a fallow year in 2018 before resurrecting again next year.

We have used data from our latest Great Britain TGI study of consumer behaviour and characteristics to assess who goes to Glastonbury and to music festivals more generally and how they can best be engaged.

Glastonbury itself has a significant male skew - more so than music festivals as a whole - with men a quarter more likely than the average adult (aged 15+) to have attended in the past year.

Music festivals appeal across a broad spectrum of age ranges

You might expect Glastonbury goers and music festival attendees more generally to be at the younger end of the age spectrum and indeed this is true, although only just. 15-24 year olds are 63% more likely than the average adult to have been to Glastonbury, but those aged 55-64 are only 4% less likely to do so. It is only at the 65+ age bracket that likelihood to attend really starts to drop precipitously. Figures for music festival goers generally broadly follow the same trend. Clearly, these festivals are doing a good job appealing to all sorts of music fan.

Some parents less likely to go than average, but others much more likely

A look at life stage gives a stronger steer on the sorts of individual who attends music festivals. Understandably, those in the TGI Lifestage group ‘Playschool Parents’ (live with son/daughter and youngest child aged 0-4) are 20% less likely than the average adult to have been to a music festival in the past year. However, ‘Primary School Parents’ (live with son/daughter and youngest child aged 5-9) are 28% more likely to attend, whilst ‘Mid-life Independents’ (aged 35-54, not married or living as a couple and do not live with relations) are 25% more likely to do so.

Particularly likely to have high family income

Those who go to music festivals are not always the material world-shunning free spirits that the stereotype might have you believe. Indeed, music festivals goers are 89% more likely than the average adult to have a family income of £75,000+, whilst Glastonbury goers are a massive four times more likely to have this family income.

Standing out, having fun and ethics are their differentiating hallmarks

The attitudes that mark music festival goers out from the average adult reveal their love of a good time and getting noticed. They are 92% more likely to agree that the point of drinking is to get drunk, 91% more likely to say they spend a lot on clothes and twice as likely to say they like to stand out in a crowd – no mean feat at a music festival. They also have an ethical side, being over twice as likely to prefer to eat vegan food and 61% more likely to say they only buy from companies with whose ethics they agree.

Sponsorship and celebrity endorsement can be an efficient way to reach them

The media preferences of festival goers are also partly revealed through their attitudes. They are over twice as likely to say they tend to buy products from companies who sponsor exhibitions or music events and also over twice as likely to say they tend to buy from companies who sponsor TV programmes. Celebrities are a big attraction for this audience and they are over twice as likely to acknowledge that celebrities influence their purchase decisions.

Festival goers are also more likely to be heavy consumers of a range of media. TGI data reveals they are two-thirds more likely than the average adult to be amongst the heaviest fifth of cinema goers, 61% more likely to be amongst the heaviest fifth of mobile internet consumers and 43% more likely to be within the heaviest fifth of outdoor media consumers.



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